Luigi Russolo: The Art of Noises (1916–) [IT, EN, ES, DE, FR, RU]

15 October 2013, dusan

The slim volume of essays, presented here for the first time in English translation, is one of the significant documents of musical aesthetics of this century. If the book itself has remained the province of a mere handful of readers, its ideas, passed on through a variety of later musical and literary movements, became the inspiration for some of the most innovative artistic creations of modern times. Luigi Russolo anticipated-indeed, he may have precipitated-a whole range of musical and aesthetic notions that formed the basis of much of the avant-garde thought of the past several decades. His ideas were absorbed, modified, and eventually transmitted to later generations by a number of movements and individuals-among them the futurists, the Dadaists, and a number of composers and writers of the nineteen-twenties. The noise instruments he invented fascinated and infuriated his contemporaries, and he was among the earliest musicians to put the often-discussed microtone to regular practical use in Western music. Russolo’s views looked forward to the time when composers would exercise an absolute choice and control of the sounds that their music employed. He was the precursor of electronic music before electronics had come of age.

Italian edition
Publisher Edizione Futuriste di “Poesia”, Milan, 1916
92 pages

English edition
Translated, and With an Introduction by Barclay Brown
Publisher Pendragon Press, New York, 1987
Monographs in Musicology series, Vol. 6
ISBN 0918728576
87 pages

Russolo at UbuWeb (includes 2 CDs and an edition of the 1967 Robert Filliou’s translation of the manifesto)
Wikipedia (EN)
Publisher (EN)

L’Arte dei rumori (Italian, 1916)
The Art of Noises (English, trans. Barclay Brown, 1987, no OCR)
El arte de los ruidos. Manifiesto Futurista (Spanish, 1996, the manifesto only)
Die Geräuschkunst (German, trans. Justin Winkler and Albert Mayr, 1999)
L’Art des bruits. Manifeste futuriste (French, 4th Edition, 2003/2013, the manifesto only)
Искусство шумов (Russian, undated, the manifesto only)

See also:
The Noise Instruments of Luigi Russolo (Barclay Brown, 1981, 18 pp)
Luciano Chessa: Luigi Russolo, Futurist: Noise, Visual Arts, and the Occult (2012)

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